Man training a rottweiler. / Photo: Pexels - Reference image
CyberPet | Leo Wilson
Listen to this article
Leer en español: 5 ideas de negocios de bajo costo para amantes de los animales
Everyone loves animals, but few people are able to turn that love into a business.
However, there are many great ways to transform your hobby into a lucrative career. Better yet, many of those paths won’t cost you a lot to get started.
The following ventures are not just great ways to merge pets and business, they are also come with a low entry cost. So low, that anyone who dreams of working with or alongside animals can venture into them.
1. Dog Trainer
Training pets is a fantastic business idea for animal lovers. Not only is it relatively inexpensive to start (you simply need to pay for your own training and supplies) but it is quite fun as well.
To start, undergo formal dog training classes (online or in-person). They are relatively easy and only take a week or two to get. From there, spend your time interacting with dogs to get used to different breeds.
You can volunteer at a shelter or pet sit for people you know. A dog training course for your own canine is a good idea as well. Once you nail down the basics, you can then use your experience, along with what you learned in the professional classes, to help other people’s dogs.
If you want to cut down on overhead, it is a good idea to make house calls to people’s homes, work out of your own house, or to partner up with established pet stores.
2. Pet Gift Baskets
While not as well-known as the other ventures on this list, pet gift baskets are an affordable business idea for any pet lover.
Creating gift baskets only requires basket items, shipping costs, and wrapping or tissue paper. That’s it. You can also save marketing money by advertising through social media.
Also read: Friday Dog Memes
What makes this idea particularly fun is that you are in complete control of what your baskets focus on. You can do a wide-reaching business with many different items, or you can only make specific treats. Always look for specific niches you can fill, such as organic food or exciting toys, and hit it hard.
3. Gourmet Pet Treats
Baking pet treats may seem daunting at first, but it is a low-entry business with a lot of upside. All you need to start a treat business are baking supplies, cooking materials, and packaging.
People love to spoil their pets. If you can give them the ability to buy a tasty-but-healthy snack they cannot find elsewhere, they will gladly buy your items.
The most important part of this venture is to find a niche that makes your treats stand out. That could be something as simple as using all-natural ingredients, or it can be something as unique as crazy flavors that no other vendor carries. As long as you know what animals can and cannot eat, you will be fine.
You can sell your treats through an online website, or you can have a physical location. Some local pet stores may carry your treats as well.
Just know that you should understand the ins and outs of the baking world. You don’t need to be a professional, but you do need to make sure the treats come out as delicious as they look.
4. Pet Photographer
There is always money in photography, especially when it comes to taking pictures of animals. If you love pets and know how to properly use a camera, this may be the business for you.
While the startup cost of this idea is a bit more than some of the other entries on this list, there are ways around that.
To take pet photos you need a good camera, strong lighting, and excellent editing software. In addition, it helps to be well-versed in that technology. If you aren’t, take time to learn about editing and photography before starting your own business.
Once you have that general knowledge, you can then figure out what niche you want to fill. General pet photos tend to do well, but certain aspects, such as action shots or set locations, are also quite appealing to owners.
If you want to further cut down on the already low costs, it can be a good idea to shoot at people’s homes or public spaces so you don’t have to pay for a studio.
Pet grooming is another easy-to-get-into business for all types of animal lovers. Everyone likes having a well-groomed pet, but not everyone likes doing it themselves. That is where you come in.
A grooming business simply requires materials and general knowledge of pet health. Read up on such topics, always understand the right tool for grooming your dog, and take formal classes. That will get you ready to go.
When setting up your grooming business, be sure to offer different packages. General grooming is great, but some owners may also want nail care, massages, different brushes, eye care, ear cleaning, and even flea removal. Know what you want to offer, understand what you’re capable of, and then bill accordingly.
It may seem like a steep hill, but there are many low-cost business ideas out there for people who enjoy animals. All of the above ideas are fun, fresh, and can be quite lucrative in the right space.
Do not settle for the mundane. Many people stay away from their own pet business because of high costs, but, as this guide shows, not everything comes with a high expense.